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There are galore antithetic paths players instrumentality to the NRL but of those lining up successful Sunday's expansive final, Moses Leota has possibly walked the hardest.

Since leaving his location successful New Zealand arsenic a youngster and moving crossed the ditch to prosecute his rugby league dream, Leota hasn't had thing handed to him connected a platter. He's earned it.

Now 26 and with 104 NRL games nether his loop - arsenic good arsenic a Test for Samoa - the antheral who brought him into the fold astatine Penrith astir a decennary ago, Phil Gould, lifted the lid connected the benignant of idiosyncratic Leota is.

"He was surviving successful a caravan retired the backmost of his aunt's place, successful Mt Druitt somewhere. We recovered each this retired later," Gould told James Bracey for Wide World of Sports' Six Tackles with Gus podcast.

"In the nether 20s helium utilized to unreserved into grooming a infinitesimal earlier grooming would start, and helium would person his enactment cogwheel on. He was covered successful rubbish, successful ungraded and grime, and his hands would beryllium bleeding.

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"He was bricklaying. He was a brickie's labourer. He would beryllium bricklaying each day, each time and past travel to grooming with his hands bleeding.

"And helium utilized to pb up – helium would ne'er whinge, ne'er kick – helium was starring up successful everything. We said helium can't support doing this… helium said 'I request the money'. He was sending wealth location to his parent successful New Zealand.

"So he's surviving successful a caravan, he's sending wealth location to his parent successful New Zealand, he's moving 5 days a week arsenic a brickie's labourer, and coming to grooming precocious successful the evenings to bid with our nether 20s team.

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"He ne'er whinged, helium ne'er complained, helium was truthful pugnacious and dedicated. I said 'let's get you a caller job, what benignant of occupation would you like?' and helium said 'I'd emotion to beryllium a centrifugal mechanic'.

"So I rang my bully person astatine the Volvo dealership successful Penrith, helium was 1 of our sponsors… we took (Leota) down there.

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"(The dealership) said 'I haven't got an apprenticeship astatine the moment, it won't commencement until adjacent year, but you tin travel and enactment present and I'll springiness you plentifulness of things to do'.

"I rang up a period aboriginal and said 'how's that kid doing astatine work?' and helium said 'I gave him a occupation washing cars, we've got the cleanest cars successful Penrith'. He said 'if you've got immoderate much similar him, nonstop them around. He won't stop'.

"Everything Moses did helium would ever person a grin connected his face. All the contracts helium signed on the way, and the large declaration helium signed earlier I left, helium was conscionable truthful appreciative and loving of the opportunity.

"We went implicit to play successful Auckland 1 year, helium was successful the first-grade side, and helium asked for a spot of clip off. He said 'I conscionable privation to spell and spot my mother'.

"He went and bought his parent a caller van, a large car for the full household and presented it. A beautiful, beauteous kid."

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Leota has blossomed into 1 of Penrith's champion forwards - and 1 of the champion props successful the game.

He missed past week's preliminary last triumph implicit Melbourne owed to a calf injury, but he's been named to enactment up successful this week's premiership decider against South Sydney.

"I was disquieted erstwhile helium didn't play past week due to the fact that helium provides truthful overmuch vigor up front, truthful I'm hoping he's 100 per cent fit," Gould said.

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